Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    I just reopened my pool and already shocked all the algae to death. I have a crappy wal mart strip tester so you will have to forgive me on some of these readings. My Chlorine levels are very high and the hardness seems to be ok, however, my TA is very low around 40? My pH is also low around 6.8 or maybe lower. My stabilizer is currently low too but I'm using the 3" tablets and my pool is covered. I have already added 12lbs of Baking Soda and 18lbs (4.5 boxes) of Borax and nothing seemed to have changed. Am I forgetting to do something before adding all these things in? My pool is ~17,000 gallons.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    Welcome to tfp, TheWu

    Unfortunately, you really can not trust the strips..although they usually are not bad on ph.

    I would strongly recommend you invest in an appropriate tests kit. See: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-...kit_comparison Many of us use the tf-100 since that one is really the best value.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheWu
    I just reopened my pool and already shocked all the algae to death. I have a crappy wal mart strip tester so you will have to forgive me on some of these readings. My Chlorine levels are very high and the hardness seems to be ok, however, my TA is very low around 40? My pH is also low around 6.8 or maybe lower. My stabilizer is currently low too but I'm using the 3" tablets and my pool is covered. I have already added 12lbs of Baking Soda and 18lbs (4.5 boxes) of Borax and nothing seemed to have changed. Am I forgetting to do something before adding all these things in? My pool is ~17,000 gallons.
    Welcome!

    You gotta ditch those test strips. They're wrong as often as they're right...that being said, trichlor and dichlor - dry chlorine pucks/tablets/powders are VERY acidic and lower pH, which is already a problem if you believe those strips. So stop using those pucks and use bleach.

    I suggest you ignore that pool for a few hours and immerse yourself studying Pool School. After you've ordered a proper test kit, of course. Best money you will spend on the pool, bar none.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    I also have a droplet test kit too and that confirms with my strip tester than my pH is around 6.8 or lower. I'll pick up a better tester soon but is there a reason why my pH won't go up? After 18lbs of Borax I should see some change right?

    Edit: Just bought the TF100 and I've been reading about pools for the past 2 days now. Only reason I found out about BBB. My water is crystal clear right now just seems to be low on pH.

  5. Back To Top    #5
    linen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    8,649

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    Well if your ph is really low, you may still need more Borax. Until you can get a better test kit, I would use the drop based tester. When it reads 6.8 it could actually be lower still. If it is still reading a ph of 6.8 after letting the water circulate for an hour since you last addition, then I would dose it up to 7.4 assuming it is at 6.8 (that would be about 5 lbs per poolcalculator.com), then test again in another hour and redose again and repeat until you start getting a change with your ph test.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheWu
    I also have a droplet test kit too and that confirms with my strip tester than my pH is around 6.8 or lower. I'll pick up a better tester soon but is there a reason why my pH won't go up? After 18lbs of Borax I should see some change right?
    Yes, there is.

    One: the tests only go down to 6.8. So anything below that reads as 6.8. You might have been at 5! It takes a lot of adjusting to make big jumps. pH is logarithmic. To go from 6 to 7 is ten times as big a jump to go from 7 to 8!
    Two: you keep adding acid via those 3" pucks, which lowers pH again. Every puck you dissolve in the pool reduces pH by about .17. How many buckets of pucks have you fed that pool since you've owned it?

    If you "shocked all the algae to death" using Dichlor powder, each 16 oz bag lowered pH about .15. How many did you pour in?
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard320
    Quote Originally Posted by TheWu
    I also have a droplet test kit too and that confirms with my strip tester than my pH is around 6.8 or lower. I'll pick up a better tester soon but is there a reason why my pH won't go up? After 18lbs of Borax I should see some change right?
    Yes, there is.

    One: the tests only go down to 6.8. So anything below that reads as 6.8. You might have been at 5! It takes a lot of adjusting to make big jumps. pH is logarithmic. To go from 6 to 7 is ten times as big a jump to go from 7 to 8!
    Two: you keep adding acid via those 3" pucks, which lowers pH again. Every puck you dissolve in the pool reduces pH by about .17. How many buckets of pucks have you fed that pool since you've owned it?

    If you "shocked all the algae to death" using Dichlor powder, each 16 oz bag lowered pH about .15. How many did you pour in?
    This is my first time opening the pool since my parents gave me the house. My parents used a LOT of pucks since owning it, but they usually have a pool guy come test and open the pool for them. Since opening the pool I've used 4 pucks (been in there for 3 days now) and 4lbs of Shock. So now I'm thinking I need to clear out a few Wal Marts of their Borax now.

    Edit: Doing some farther reading, Borax seems to only have a pH of 9.~ and Washing Soda has a pH of 11. Soda Ash from my local store has 13. Maybe I just need to start with something stronger for more of the drastic change that I need.

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Vette's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    404

    Re: Need help raising PH/TA levels.

    Soda Ash, sold as PH increaser at at pool store, is more expensive than Borax. Washing Soda would be better than Borax, but good luck finding it. None of my grocery store or Target near me carry it, so I just use Borax which also gets the added benefit of a little borates in the water.

    I used Trichlor all last season on a brand new pool to build up CYA, so I went though quite a bit of Borax. Now my CYA is 50 and I'm using exclusively bleach, and I only needed Borax when I took the cover off. It's steady as a rock at 7.6. Bleach is saving me on chemicals to increase PH
    11,700 gallon 21' round 54" deep all-resin AGP - June 2012
    Waterway 1HP 2-speed pump / 100 sq ft cartridge filter
    Hayward 150,000btu Natural Gas heater
    I use and recommend the TF-100 for testing

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •